Elizabeth Street

Five Tips for Managing Your Time & Money

Creative InspirationLiz TubmanComment

How do you manage your time and money as a maker?  I know I always have more projects going on, both in my head and in my hands, than I can work on at once.  Sometimes there are so many ideas floating around in my head I can't seem to focus on the one in my hands, even when that one is really great!  Do you feel like this too?  I work a full time job during the day and I only have a couple of hours at best in the evening to devote to knitting and sewing.  How do you manage your resources to make the most of your time and money?  

I was thinking about this idea during the last week and I've come up with a few ideas:

  • Stay off social media!  I know Instagram can be a HUGE source of distraction for me at times.  I think putting my phone or iPad down while I'm working is really helpful.  I can't see all the shiny pretty things other people are making that suddenly seem better than whatever I'm making.  If I'm conscious of when and why I'm using social media, it's a tool (a great one!) and not a source of distraction or discontentment.
  • Save ideas!  When I come across something I really, really love, I save it.  That simple act of acknowledging it and setting it aside somewhere where I can access it satisfies something in me and I'm able to move on.  Then I can come back to it when I'm looking for inspiration or when I have space for a new project.
  • Slow and steady wins the race.  Even a row or two is progress; the joy is supposed to be in the process, and sometimes I need to remind myself of that.
  • Set a budget for supplies.  I started doing this for myself, inspired by the stash less challenges shared by the Craft Sessions.  It's been kind of successful, but I've found myself easily going over my monthly amount if my budget allowed.  Now, if I would focus on current projects instead of always buying for a new one, I think the budgeting would sort itself out.
  • Use your stash first.  This also ties into the budget; always check your stash first!  I usually find I have way more than I remember and maybe you won't need buy anything at all!

I hope these are helpful!  No matter how you go about it, making should be something that's relaxing and fun.